Following the very sad news of the passing of the Duke of Edinburgh our staff have been reflecting on their memories of him. Some have shared their personal memories of the Duke including Alison Walker who is an administrative support officer in the Trust’s Medical Engineering Department.

She explained that completing all three levels of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme has had a profound effect on her. She said:

“I am a bronze, silver and gold Duke of Edinburgh award holder. Taking part from 1974 to 1978. I strongly believe taking partDofE.jpg in the scheme has made me the person I am today.

“I was an only child to older parents who were quite insular. Taking part in the scheme gave me the opportunity to gain new skills, confidence and to not be afraid of trying new things even if it resulted in failure. I learned how to reflect and move on.

Throughout life I have often said being part of the scheme is one of my greatest achievements. It has not always been plain sailing; even when participating on a practice walk in 1976 I suffered heat exhaustion (not an experience to be repeated) but with the help of my team mates I was taken off the hill to safety.

“In 1978, when I was invited to Buckingham Palace to receive my gold award it was very special as in the Palace was not open to the public at the time.

“My one regret is Prince Philip came to talk to me, but I was so in awe I didn’t make eye contact. The Duke was genuinely interested and spent time with each group.

“I was the 5th person in Gosforth High School, Newcastle Upon Tyne to gain my gold award. I am very proud to be part of millions who have taken part in the scheme and would recommend any young person to take part and gain valuable skills.

"I send sincere condolences to Prince Philips family. His contribution to so many young people’s lives throughout the commonwealth will be his lasting legacy.”

If you too, would like to send your condolences, you can do so by going to the Royal Website.